Charles M. Cooper papers1925-1968
1 Linear Foot
Charles Cooper was born on June 27, 1900 in Minneapolis, Minnesota. He married Marion Clark Grogan (1898-1971) on June 21, 1930 in Watertown, Massachusetts and had two daughters. Cooper lived in Newark, Delaware from 1940 until his death on August 26, 1971. Cooper attended high school briefly in Albany, New York before moving to Rutland, Vermont, where he graduated from high school in 1916. After high school, he was employed as a laborer until he was old enough to volunteer in the Army in the fall of 1918. That fall he was sent to MIT in the Student Army Training Corps for three months. This college experience interested him so much that he decided earn enough money to pay for schooling. After his brief career in the Army, Cooper worked in the machine tool industry until 1921, when he enrolled at MIT, graduating in 1925 with a BS in Chemical Engineering.
After graduating from college, Cooper worked at MIT from 1925 until 1936, first as a research assistant, and then as an assistant professor in the School of Chemical Engineering Practice. During much of his career as assistant professor, he was director at the school’s location at the Eastern Manufacturing Company in South Brewer, Maine.
Cooper left MIT in 1936 to work at the DuPont Company, starting as a chemical engineer in the Ammonia Department at the Belle Plant in Charleston, West Virginia. In October 1940 he was transferred to the Experimental Station in Wilmington, Delaware, working in the Engineering Department Technical Division. From August 1942 until January 1945 Cooper was on loan to the University of Chicago, and worked in their Metallurgical Laboratory and in their Explosives Department for the Manhattan Project. He was the first DuPont employee loaned to the University of Chicago, and was in charge of the engineering on plutonium production.
Upon his return to the Experimental Station, he became Director of the Engineering Research Laboratory. In 1958 he transferred to the Louviers Building, as Assistant Division Director of Development Engineering Division, in charge of the Engineering Research Lab. His title was changed in 1960, to Division Associate of the Engineering Research Section. In 1963 Cooper became Associate Director of the Research Division of the DuPont Engineering Department, and remained in that position until his retirement on July 1, 1965.
Scope and Content
The collection includes files about engineering and engineering education, ideas and inventions that Cooper had during his career, correspondence with MIT, and papers that Cooper presented to various groups. Other files include pictures of Cooper from the 1940s, a Soilmaster venture considered by DuPont, speeches given by Cooper, and correspondence about his work in recruiting Delaware high school students for the University of Delaware’s Engineering program.
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Finding Aid & Administrative Information
- Charles M. Cooper papers
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